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1978 Precision

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by The Crow Hailer, Jan 20, 2012.

  1. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    Good morning. I am new here but have been a Precision player for about twenty five years.

    Please can someone help me to understand my bass. It is a 1978ish model serial S8xxxxx, Olympic white - faded to a creamy slightly yellow colour. The odd thing is it has a completely black fingerboard, it looks like ebony but I'm not sure. I've never seen another quite like it, although other '78 models I have seen are identical in every other aspect. It also has white pick-ups. I've owned it for about fifteen years and it is really a wonderful player

    Does anyone know what black woods Fender used for finger boards at the time mine was made? Is it some sort of special issue?

    Many thanks
  2. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    If you can post some pics, it would probably rouse some of the Fender historians to venture forth with thoughts.
  3. LowEZ

    LowEZ Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2011
    Central NJ
    Perhaps a previous owner stained it black? There are several "ebonizing" products out there to do exactly that. Some close-up pics would help a lot here. I don't think Fender offered ebony boards back then, but I'm no expert.
  4. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    Good idea about the pictures, will try to get some close-ups done.
  5. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    I had a look at staining possibility but looks impossible because the wood is black right up to the edge and the grain is much finer than rosewood. The fingerboard is almost completely smooth.
  6. msb


    Jul 3, 2002
    Halifax,N,S. Canada
    Fender at the time used either rosewood or maple . Someone might have put on an ebony board and dropped in Dimarzios .
  7. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    looks factory done to me and the pickups are fender.
  8. Fender used the S8 serial number all the way up into the early 80's. In the early 80's they switched to white pickup covers for a little bit of time. It sounds to me as if you have an 82-83 era Fender not a 78 like you assumed based on the serial number. Pictures would help more in that regard. As far as the fretboard, Fender did not offer ebony so it is either dark rosewood or it was treated with something.
  9. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    No pics, no dark fingerboard, LOL!
  10. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    OK, I had to borrow a digital camera...here is the headstock and body and will put fretboard under.

    Attached Files:

    • body.
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      110.2 KB
  11. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    ...and the fingerboard...

    Attached Files:

    • fret.
      File size:
      125.6 KB
  12. Paul M

    Paul M

    Jul 21, 2005
    The light is coming from behind the neck. The fingerboard is in shadow.
  13. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012

    Attached Files:

  14. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    the light is coming from th window but the fingerboard is black, I wouldn't be asking otherwise. I will take another photograph.
  15. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    sorry, try again...

    Attached Files:

  16. bertbassplayer

    bertbassplayer Supporting Member

    Jul 7, 2000
    DFW, TX
    I'd suspect that your looking at an 80's bass instead of 78. You can always check the pots and the neck/body numbers to be sure.

    Fender did use ebony boards on their Elite IIs, but I don't know if they used them on anything else.

    Anyway I'm not a Fender expert, there's a lot of other guys on here that know a bunch more than I do. I'm sure they'll chime in.
  17. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    it does have a thumb rest but I took it off because it gets in the way.
  18. 77PBass

    77PBass Banned

    Dec 5, 2007
    Looks like an 1982-ish Standard Precision with an ebony board to me. Ebony wasn't standard but is certainly an upgrade from Rosewood. Consider yourself lucky.

    BTW, the Special Precision came with ebony and gold hardware.
  19. The Crow Hailer

    The Crow Hailer

    Jan 20, 2012
    It has a great tone and plays really well.
  20. Dbassmon


    Oct 2, 2004
    Rutherford, NJ
    Sure looks like ebony. I could not say for sure that Fender never used any ebony. I have never seen a Fender bass with ebony finger board except custom work by independent luthiers. Notice the mother of pearl dots... Wonderful bass.

    Please take a polishing cloth and clean it up. ;)

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